The Rising Tide of Voice Marketing Strategies.

Consumers are always on the lookout for things that make their lives feel a lot less manual. Whether it's for looking up restaurants or asking for directions, they want to complete tasks without the hassle of manually doing it.
Veena Ramakrishnan
December 3, 2020 - 4 min. read

Not that I want to bore you with numbers, but according to Statista’s forecasts, the number of digital voice assistants will reach 8.4 billion units—a number higher than the world’s current population—by 2024.

Sounds like a lot of Alexas and Google Homes, doesn’t it?

If you ask me, you shouldn’t be concerned about the gigantic population of Alexas and Google Homes. However, I would advise you to consider the impact of more and more consumers adopting voice technology.

This means that brands and businesses will have to keep up with consumer interests and incorporate voice marketing to not just remain visible, but also avoid losing out to competitors.

What is voice marketing?

Voice marketing is just like any other form of content marketing; you create and share a certain type of content to stimulate audiences’ interest in your products and services.

But what sets voice marketing apart is that you will be employing a set of strategies and tactics targeted at audiences using voice devices.

But why do I need a voice marketing strategy?

Good question!

As Aashay Shah, Digital Director at Neo Media World, explained at his DMFW Asia talk, the top triggers for voice technology usage among consumers are curiosity and convenience. Consumers are always on the lookout for things that make their lives feel a lot less manual. Whether it’s for looking up restaurants or asking for directions, they want to complete tasks without the hassle of manually doing it.

In 2019 alone, 147 million units of voice assistants were sold in the US. And in 2020 (aka the ‘stay-at-home year’), the usage of voice assistants has only increased with people all over the world cooped up at home for survival.

Clearly, the message here is that brands need to start thinking (if you haven’t already) about building relationships with consumers through an interactive voice experience. You need to find out how you can help more people discover your brand with voice technology.

How are brands leveraging this tech?

Newsflash! Exciting things are already happening with voice marketing!

A lot of brands have already figured out how to use voice technology to reach and engage with customers. Here are four examples of how brands are using voice technology to better connect with their audience.

1. Domino’s

Haaaaave you met Dom?

Domino’s introduced a voice-activated ordering assistant that goes by the name Dom to help customers order pizzas on the go (or from the comfort of your couch). Using Dom, you can place a new order of pizza or track an existing order using just your voice.

Domino’s has always announced their aim of becoming a 100% digital company. By weaving emerging tech like voice technology into their daily operations, you can tell that Domino’s is making strides in incorporating technology to emerge as a leader in the fast-food chain industry.

2. Starbucks

Starbucks debuted their voice-activated ordering feature back in 2017 where customers can order coffee on command using the My Starbucks barista app.

Starbucks’ voice ordering capabilities were launched to enhance its digital customer experiences within the Starbucks mobile iOS app and the popular Amazon Alexa platform. This feature was an extension of Starbucks Mobile Order & Pay, which allows customers to order and pay for their items before arriving at their store.

3. Nestlé

If you, like me, are an amateur cook, you know the struggle of looking up cooking instructions when you’re in the kitchen. There’s this whole drill of washing your hands and wiping them down with a towel before you could pull out a phone or cookbook to see what goes next into that weird concoction you’re cooking. Miss out on a step, and you would end up with an English trifle that has beef, custard, and sautéed peas.

But with voice, that’s no longer necessary.

To enrich the kitchen experience using voice-assistant technologies, Nestlé’s new Goodnes skill turns any device with Amazon Alexa into a true cooking companion with voice instructions. You also get to hear and see recipe steps in their paired web browser, along with access to nutritional information, ingredients, fun facts, and how-to videos designed to help consumers learn new cooking techniques.

4. Tide

Alexa, ask Tide how do I remove chocolate stain?

Alexa, ask Tide how much detergent I should use to wash jeans?

Alexa, ask Tide how do I remove grass stain?

Yes, you can now tackle tough stains and laundry questions with help from Tide and Alexa.

P&G’s detergent brand Tide has partnered up with Amazon to give customers step-by-step instructions for laundry routines. With help from Tide, Alexa can answer over 200 specific laundry questions and also show images and videos to take you through the instructions.

Final thoughts

Clearly, voice technology is only getting bigger and better while the possibilities for the future of it remains endless. And who knows? Maybe someday in the future, I could even let Jarvis run the house and live the life of Tony Stark.

But for marketers, the time is now to deliver content that’s accessible and seamless to make the most out of their marketing efforts.